Police chief interviewing for New Orleans job

Monday, April 26, 2010 at 3:41pm
Staff reports

This story has been updated. 

Metro police Chief Ronal Serpas is one of six candidates for police superintendent in New Orleans.

Serpas traveled to New Orleans, his hometown, on Monday afternoon to interview for the position.

"I absolutely love Nashville. My family and I have made this city our home for the past six years, and there is no other chief’s job that I would even remotely consider over Nashville," he said in a statement issued Monday afternoon. "In fact, I have been asked on several occasions to become a candidate for police chief in other major U.S. cities. I declined each invitation. When a New Orleans television station inquired on Feb. 19 about my interest in the job there, I replied that I was very happy in Nashville and had no plan to go anywhere else." 

He said he changed his mind after "lifelong friends" in New Orleans convinced him he should consider returning to the city where his career began, and where he spent 41 years before becoming chief of the Washington State Patrol. 

Serpas became Metro’s chief of police in January 2004 after serving for two and a half years in Washington. 

"The decision to enter the process in New Orleans was not easy and did not become final until this month, at which time I informed Mayor [Karl] Dean," he said. "I am going there today to participate in an interview process with other candidates. I am going to New Orleans as only a candidate, to listen and to answer questions." He said he would return to Nashville later this week. 

The chief has a doctorate in Urban Studies from the University of New Orleans, and he taught as an assistant professor of Criminal Justice at Loyola University New Orleans from 1993 to 2001. 

42 Comments on this post:

By: idgaf on 4/26/10 at 2:08

Hope he gets it so we would be rid of him and get a real chief in there.

By: Kosh III on 4/26/10 at 2:11


By: MamaG on 4/26/10 at 2:19

Don't let the door hit you in the arse on the way out!!!

By: TITAN1 on 4/26/10 at 3:24

You people should be careful what you wish for. He has done a great job here and it would be a huge loss for Nashville. I do wish him and his family the best. I just wish we could send idgaf instead. Then he could hate everything there. MamaG and Kosh could go with him.

By: richgoose on 4/26/10 at 3:36

Titan1, You are a good man but you are not in a position to understand the big picture. I wish you were a deeper thinker because you are a very loyal person. I know your supervisor is glad to have someone like you on his team. He probably realizes that as long as you are not responsible for short term or long term planning that you can be counted to do a good job.

By: idgaf on 4/26/10 at 4:45

We need to learn from Garcia and get rid of him if he don't get the job before he can do more damage. It is clear he wants to move on so we should help him.

By: TITAN1 on 4/26/10 at 5:45

frank, you judging me is funny. You try to come off like you are smarter than me and a better person. How pathetic that a whiner like you would do that. Those of you who want him gone don't like authority figures. idgaf also doesn't like him because he can't drive on the sidewalks. I have lived in Nashville and middle Tennessee all my 54 years and chief Serpas has been the best we have ever had. Oh, and frank, I am a good and loyal employee. I have been on my job for 20 years. frank, I do think long term and I do think for myself and it really is not hard to see that you enjoy being an asshole.

By: richgoose on 4/26/10 at 6:42


I do not for one instance think I am a better person than you. I do agree that I enjoy being who I am.

If there were more people like you in the world we would not need so many assholes like myself to point out the dangers that lie ahead and around us.

By: TITAN1 on 4/26/10 at 7:49

In many cases those who work for others are the ones who really know whats going on. And yes frank, you do come off like you think you are better than everyone else. You may just be putting on an act or you may really feel that way. Either way, it is pathetic. I guess that is how you get your jollies.

By: tv8527 on 4/26/10 at 8:59

PLEASE please please GTFO of our city ....You have pulled our neighborhood patrols in favor of traffic enforcement & caused gangs to actually become a bigger problem under your watch,after denying for years that we even had a gang problem.I don't like your leadership style or the way you always pull some stat out of thin air to support whatever position you want to pursue or cover your ass with.Hopefully you will be replaced by a more competent professional who listens to the concerns of neighborhood groups, Rather than grabbing the spotlight when your quarterly or annual stats come out.

By: eastnashville37207 on 4/27/10 at 5:32

The only reason Serpas got the job to begin with in N.O. was because no one else wanted it. Serpas did nothing while he was there and that's why he went to Washington State. Nashville? Serpas gets an A+ on knowing how to rearrange the stats to make himself look good. He is nothing other than a political machine and knows nothing of ridding Nashville of crime. Go bye Serpas and this time stay there.

By: Anna3 on 4/27/10 at 6:20

Wow! Titan1 you really have a thin skin....and where's the tolerance for another opinion? Srpass has been a political "Blunt instrument" since he first hit the city. Frankly...he replaced one good ole boys club with another...and his DUI offender kid hasn't helped him at all. I truly believe that we can do better than Surpass...I hope he give us the chance.

By: govskeptic on 4/27/10 at 6:22

Washington State Police are mainly Traffic Cops. Lived
there 2 yrs while in the service. Our Chief may be looking
for raise or to Let the Mayor know he's indespenable.
I'd be surprised if New Orleans new mayor, a political
animal, doesn't already know whose to be next chief.

By: TITAN1 on 4/27/10 at 6:38

Anna3, I have no tolerance for those who whine and cry about EVERYTHING. Chief Serpas has done a remarkable job for Nashville. If those who whine all the time got off their butts and did their part then maybe, just maybe, they would be productive. It is easy to be a lazy butt and sit and whine but it is another thing to get out and do something about it if they think the job is not getting done.

By: bfra on 4/27/10 at 7:12

Titan1 - Your suck-ups get old! As a hip hip hurraher for pacman, aka spitman repeatedly, your opinion doesn't carry any logical reasoning, then or now.

By: TITAN1 on 4/27/10 at 7:56

barf, slither back under your rock, your lack of knowledge got old a long time ago.

Anna3, those who think chief Serpas is all about traffic citations overlook all the other things he does. He only has a limited number of officers. Traffic laws are there for a reason, SAFETY! There are so many morons that get behind the wheel of 3,500 (or heavier) pound machine and think they are the only ones on the road. All the whiners need to look in the mirror. If you speed, if you run a red light, if you drive in the HOV lane when you are not suppose to, or if you use the center turn lane or shoulder of the road for passing then you are the reason why there have to be officers to patrol traffic. Stop whining and do your part! Then the officers can be elsewhere!

By: localboy on 4/27/10 at 7:57

Eight of fifteen posts on topic - not bad.

By: PKVol on 4/27/10 at 8:06

TITAN1 - I stand beside you with your opinions on Serpas - he has done a good job for the city and Nashville will be hard-pressed to find a worthy replacement should he leave for New Orleans.

By: richgoose on 4/27/10 at 8:34

Every time I think of TITAN1, I think of Jesus who said "Forgive them father for they know not what they do."

By: TITAN1 on 4/27/10 at 8:48

Hopefully frank, he will forgive you.

By: Paul on 4/27/10 at 9:45

It would be nice to have a police chief who doesn't lie to or lecture anyone who questions him. Our crime is on the rise--Serpas is a master at manipulating stats. The Forbes piece last year said it all. Forbes has more integrity than our city government. Serpas cares only about his own ego and power, and makes a mockery of police work.. We have many good officers here, but the bad ones and their so-called leader are part of the crime problem in this city.

By: bfra on 4/27/10 at 2:53

Titan1 - Your creditability has 0, zilch, nada, just like the spitman's reputation!

By: TITAN1 on 4/27/10 at 3:26

barf, you could not keep the facts straight in the past so why not live in the present. Or do you always want to be a loser? You know nothing about me, sonny. Just because I supported Pacman until the Vegas incident you think you know me, you don't know squat. Try carrying on a conversation in the present, if you can.

By: tv8527 on 4/27/10 at 7:07

Titan we all know your Kooaid drinking mentality, Give it up & spare the rest of us.

By: kwikrnu on 4/27/10 at 7:50

I love you Serpas, don't go!

By: dangerlover on 4/27/10 at 8:04

God I hope New Orleans takes this peice of crap off our hands. His primary crime stopping policy is to pull people over for speeding and other minor traffic violations, with the hope of catching other crimes being committed in the process. (And he has admitted as much.) Several judges have found this practice be, while obeying the letter of the US Constitution, contrary to spirit of the 4th amendment which bans illegal search and seizure. This man is a parasite living off of our rights. Good riddance.

By: pswindle on 4/27/10 at 8:38

Thank's for the memories.

By: TITAN1 on 4/28/10 at 4:19

dangerlover and tv8527, sounds like you are part of the problem.

By: Paul on 4/28/10 at 7:20

Officers have admitted to me that they pull over people they think will stop. A lot of people will not question an officer who tells them they are speeding or that they didn't stop, etc., because they were taught to respect and never to question authority. Thus, those people pay the tickets and the officers make their quotas. I see the stormtrooper who patrols my neighborhood out all the time, pulling over old people and blocking the driveways of residents and businesses while he sits and does his paperwork. He's also nasty to people in this neighborhood. A lot of traffic violators and violent criminals are getting away because Serpas and his sycophants do not care about crime in this town. Serpas and the handful of stormtroopers he has enabled here should leave, and let the good officers do what they are trained to do and want to do--prevent and fight crime.

By: PKVol on 4/28/10 at 7:42

Gotta love the anonymity that the internet provides. These people bashing Serpas would never make these comments to his face and their response would be that they'd be fearful of the retaliation. What a miserable existence to sit and spew this crap and then fear that they can't do it openly.

By: dangerlover on 4/28/10 at 7:42

Maybe I am, TITAN1. I mean, there is an epidemic of people going 35 in an unmarked 30 zone, right? Sounds to me like you are an uneducated douchebag UT fan who doesn't know what he's talking about..

By: dangerlover on 4/28/10 at 7:43

I'll gladly tell Ronal Serpas that he and his drunk driving son can go jump off a cliff, PKVol.

By: TITAN1 on 4/28/10 at 7:51

You are right, PKVol. They will type anything to complain and whine, but they are never part of the solution, just the problem.

By: TITAN1 on 4/28/10 at 7:52

dangerlover, who is stopping you?

By: dangerlover on 4/28/10 at 8:02

Isn't being within the law being part of the solution TITAN1? I mean, are you a super hero who fights crime in his spare time? Unless you are, your accusation makes no sense. If you actually stopped to think about the facts, you might realize that a Police Chief who brushes aside the fundamental rights given to this nation is a very dangerous and scary thing. As for who is stopping me from telling Serpas and his hypocritical family where they can go...nobody. What IS stopping me is the fact that I have no idea where to find him, and not the time to track his fat ass down.

By: TITAN1 on 4/28/10 at 8:18

Yeah, right! LOL! You also sound a little paranoid. Speeding kills! Running red lights kill! Running stop signs kill! If morons that do this would stop, then the officers would not have to fool with them. And if a random pullover helps stop crime then so be it. BTW, they can pull me over ANYTIME, because I have nothing to hide. I will thank the officer for a job well done!

By: tv8527 on 4/28/10 at 8:36

Titan let me guess you live in Brentwood or Belleview Both areas that haven't had or will not have to deal with a gang issue. I live here in East Nashville & have been one of the chief's harshest critics.Oh he started out great , came to our neighborhood meetings made us feel like he was here to help struggling areas & promised us things would improve.then 3mo later he pulls our neighborhood patrols for traffic enforcement .The gangs moved in in force.with in a year they have a good hold on areas that aren't as active as they should be & spread like wildfire & the chief says Nashville doesn't have a gang problem.Now their dug in & your not gonna get them out short of declaring them domestic terrorist.& arresting them on site, & finally last month he says we need to step up gang enforcement & is finally acknowledging the problem I have been battling for 6 years.

By: dangerlover on 4/28/10 at 9:16

Dude, are you drunk? Everybody knows that speeding kills. What you apparently aren't getting is that Serpas has ordered his officers to pull people over for MINOR violations in the hope of catching other activities. I have personally been given 2 citations for being less than 5 mph over the limit, one of which came from an area that the limit of 30 was not posted. If you don't care that happens in our city, then screw you. I'm not paranoid; he has admitted it several times.

By: TITAN1 on 4/28/10 at 9:42

I have nothing to hide, so no problem. I hate losing the chief to another city but our loss is their gain. I wish he and his family the best. Those of you who live to complain will complain about the next chief also. Nobody will change your minds because complaining is what you love to do.

Dude are you drunk, screw you? LOL! I rest my case.

Good luck chief, there are many of us who appreciate you.

Now whiners, this MB is all yours. Misery loves company and you whiners deserve each other.

NCP writers, you do your job very well. Sorry the MB became a cesspool for the always unhappy whiners. They will never be pleased. Good luck, NCP!

By: dangerlover on 4/28/10 at 9:58


By: dangerlover on 4/28/10 at 10:00

You're the one complaining, many of us here are simply expressing our gratitude that Serpas is leaving. If you are indeed drunk, you may want to talk to your parents...I don't think it's a good idea for a 13 year old girl to be drinking. LOL!! OMG!

By: MamaG on 4/28/10 at 11:08

This is, after all, an OPINION board and as such, I express MY opinion. I don't care if any or none of you agree with me. I think the police chief is a buffoon and I will be glad to see him go.

By: TITAN1 on 4/26/10 at 4:24
"...MamaG and Kosh could go with him."

If you think he's so great, why don't YOU go with him instead? Killing two birds with one stone, so to speak.